At Disko Island, central W Greenland, research on rock glacier dynamics and surface climate is being continued by Ole Humlum, University of Copenhagen and the University Courses on Svalbard (UNIS). DGPS surveying of three active rock glaciers was carried out this year.
Surface climate investigations were extended, using various types of miniature dataloggers to measure surface and active layer temperatures. Automatic measurements of precipitation close to the rock glacier initiation line have been initiated. The timing of surface movements is experimentally recorded by means of vibrationsensitivedataloggers. Sampling of ice from rock glaciers, for isotopic analysis, has been continued and extended.
The headwall weathering rate, and the rock glacier role as a transport agent in high-relief arctic regions, are being investigated. Five active rock glaciers located in various meteorological settings in Disko Island are now included in this general monitoring programmeme. In Mellemfjord (W Disko) and at the Arctic Station (S Disko), two automatic meteorological stations (including measurement of active layer temperatures) have been in operation since 1993 and 1991.
Bo Elberling and co-workers (Institute of Geography, University of Copenhagen) are studying the environmental impact resulting from oxidizing sulfidic mine tailings in the High Arctic. During the last three years fieldwork was carried out at the zinc-producing Nanisivik Mine in Canada together with freezer experiments on oxygen diffusion and consumption in frozen
sulfidic waste material. The work is funded by the Environmental Department, Ministry of Environment and Energy, Denmark. As part of the study, cold-tolerant sulfide-oxidizing bacteria have been identified in natural and waste material from the Nanisivik area. Biological catalysis is responsible for about 1/3 of the observed oxidation, and bacteria are found to be active at temperatures as low as 4°C. High oxygen uptake rates and heavy metal release from well-drained tailings are observed during summer months, and snow accumulation
during autumn and winter is considered responsible for reduced but surprisingly high pollution rates throughout most of the year. The project ends in 1999.
At Zackenberg, NE Greenland, a snow fence manipulation project was started in 1998 by Bjarne H.Jakobsen, Bo Elberling and Hanne H. Christiansen, (Institute of Geography, University of Copenhagen). In the 1999 summer the first data was collected since the manipulation started. The effect of the snow fence was reduced because of largely increased natural snow precipitation during the 1998-1999 winter. Data on active layer soil water and gas was collected in cooperation with Ron Sletten (University of Washington, USA) and Birgit Hagedorn (Alfred Wegener Institute, Germany). Geoelectrical soundings were made in the Zackenberg area as preparation for a coring programmeme in 2000. On the Faroe Islands a new project called LINK (Linking land and sea at the Faroe Islands: Mapping and Understanding North Atlantic Changes) was funded by the North Atlantic programmeme of the Danish Research Councils for the period 1999-2001. One part of this project is monitoring periglacial processes in combination with modern mountain climate. The first mountain meteorological station in these islands was established during the autumn of 1999. This included a shallow (12 m) borehole with temperature monitoring. The MAAT at the highest mountain tops is about 0-1°C, so pockets of permafrost could occur. This part of the LINK project is carried out by Ole Humlum and Hanne H. Christiansen (Institute of Geography, University of Copenhagen) and
Lis Mortensen (Museum for Natural History, Torshavn Faroe Islands).
Hanne H. Christiansen (firstname.lastname@example.org)